A Powerful Way To Handle The Spouse Objection

Written by Sean McPheat | Linkedin thumb

5 April, 2012

“Well, everything looks good. But I just have to ask my wife about this…”

“Yes, it is a great offer, but I always discuss things like this with my husband first…”

Is It an Objection, a Stall or a Condition?
We are all familiar with the spouse objection, and before I give you a great way to answer this stall, let me first make one thing clear: You first must make sure that you are Coupledealing with an objection or a stall and not a CONDITION.

What I mean is that if your sales process is such that to have a qualified prospect, you need both the husband AND wife together, then you are not dealing with an objection or a stall. If you are doing a “one-legged” presentation, that is a condition. In such a case, you need to strengthen your qualifying and appointment setting. Closing is not the issue.

However, in situations where a couple is not the DM (decision maker), then you have, in most cases a stall, sometimes an objection.

The Real DM
You have the business owner and you know that the spouse has absolutely nothing to do with the business. Yet the shop owner tells you that he has to speak to his wife. Or the doctor or accountant tells you that she has to “run it by” her husband first. In these cases, try the answer below.

This answer, however, is not for the faint of heart. It takes a strong sales person. As always, the words are nothing more than an example of the concept and not meant as a script. Also, it will work for either spouse, as well as for other unconnected people that the prospect wants to use as the basis for a stall.

Shame On You!
As soon as you get that stall, your reaction needs to revert to one pure shock and utter disappointment. You cannot believe what you are hearing. Then, very sincerely and almost defeated, come back with something like this…

Sales Person
“Ah…wow. Um, I really just don’t know what to say, Steve. I mean, I ah…I really don’t know what to even think about that.”

Prospect
“What? It’s no big deal. I always talk about things like this with my wife.”

Sales Person
“Steve, let me get this straight…you run this business every day, and make all the decisions every day, is that right?”

Prospect
“Well, yeah…”

Sales Person
“And, you have your finger on the pulse of this business. I mean you know what is going on every minute; you manage the daily operations, correct?”

Prospect
“Yes. But like I said, I like to talk to her about things like this.”

Sales Person
“Steve, you know this business inside and out, and more intimately than anyone on earth can know this business, including your wife. Then, on top of that, you have me, right here in front of you, giving you ALL of the information you need to make a informed, intelligent business decision…AND I’m right here, now, to answer questions.

Now, with all of that, YOU are apparently STILL not able to make a business decision.

So, you are telling me, you are going to go to your wife; who knows one-tenth of what you know and understand of the needs of YOUR business…then you are going to give her just a small fraction of the information.

Steve, I have spent three years learning how to deliver the information I just gave to you in the last 45 minutes. There is simply no way possible for you to give her the same information and you will not have all of the material I have either.

But, you are going to ask your wife; Sarah, right? Who has but a fraction of the knowledge and understanding of your business, and you are going to give her but maybe 10% of the information needed to make an educated decision…

And you are going to PUT 100% of the RESPONSIBILITY to make YOUR business decision on HER shoulders?! Steve, I just cannot believe you would put that type of PRESSURE on your wife.
I’m shocked and a little disappointed. I’m sorry.”

The Truth
While that example may be a bit exaggerated, that is exactly what the prospect is saying. When you make it clear to the buyer what they are actually telling you, usually you will get the truth.

Prospect
“Well, no. I mean. I make the decisions. I just wanted to talk to her. Actually, the main thing I want to talk to her about is the monthly payment. I’m just a little concerned about that…”

If it is a one-legger, you done. If not, this close may salvage a few sales you may have thought were lost.

Happy Selling!

Sean

Sean McPheat

MTD Sales Training | Sales Blog | Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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